I have avoided rubber mats for years because of the STANK. You heard me. I can hardly stand to be near one, let alone take a deep yogic breath on one. I like the idea of an eco friendly mat, however, so I decided to try this prAna mat.
When I first opened it, I thought I was in for the same stinky situation. Granted this is a rubber mat, and it does smell, but the smell started to fade after a few days practice. And the instructions say to rub lightly with a solution of water and white vinegar. This totally helps!!!
What really sold me on this mat and got me over the rubber smell is how damn lovely it is. The tribal looking design is elegant and somehow animalistic and I love looking at it during practice!! It is so soothing. The pictures online don't do it justice.
It is very thick and supports your elbows, knees, and head in various yoga poses. The thickness of the rubber makes it heavy though. I don't mind a heavy yoga mat but I wouldn't want to carry this mat on a plane or for long travel.
At 78 inches it is longer than the standard 72 inch mat which is nice when you're tall and lying flat on the mat your heels don't hang off. Total non-slip surface right from the get go in regular and hot yoga classes.
The only thing I can see will be an issue with this mat is that dirt shows easily on the mat. A quick wipe down after practice will keep it looking good, but it makes me wonder if it will start looking worn faster.
This is a great price for such a quality mat. Geez, I kind of have a crush on this thing. Beautiful lovely mat.....and rubber! Very cool.